Kinship with the Kinsmen

On Saturday, Peter, Dan and I hiked up to North Kinsman via Lonesome Lake, then I continued over to South Kinsman. At 10 miles, it was the longest winter hike for me this season, and with Dan in our group it was one of the fastest. It’s been a while since I went up with someone so far out of my league, and it felt pretty good actually! Dan and his dog Martha shot up the Lonesome Lake Trail like they were on jet skies. He didn’t put on his snowshoes till later. Meanwhile, I was slipping around so much on the hard pack, I felt like a drunk 10-year-old. Anyway, it’s good to re-learn important lessons – on Saturday my lesson was the one I try to teach everybody else; pace yourself. Find your own speed and comfort level and stick to it! After about a mile of trying, and failing miserably, to keep up with Dan, I stopped, strapped on my MSRs and hiked my own hike. No issues there! It was a fine day weather wise, we each fell into our own strides and Dan patiently waited at each trail head or crossing for us to catch up.
Lighting was a bit off though. Thanks to that storm rolling in from the south, it was overcast all day so pictures were not so great. I did manage to get some nice shots of the strange lenticular formations that appeared in the afternoon.
A couple neat things about the hike: the summit of North Kinsman had about 20 people on it when we showed up! I don’t remember there being that many folks on a winter summit. There was a huge group, plus us, plus two of my favorite hikers, Trish and Alex, her daughter. Alex is 6 or 7, and I think the youngest hiker to reach all 48 of NH’s 4,000 footers. She’s now going after her winter 48. North and South Kinsman were number 19 and 20 for her. Outstanding!
They also have a wonderful blog. Here’s the link: www.trishandalex.blogspot.com
Later, after Peter and Dan headed down, I hiked over to South Kinsman and faced some incredible winds at the summit!
It was a great day, and my feet felt like tenderized raw meat after, but it’s these type of hikes we’re going to have to get used to to prepare for Nepal.
I’ve posted some pictures here: http://danandmeenakshi.phanfare.com/4598571#imageID=95087633

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